Despite all appearances to the contrary, Lookout Landing actually doesn't mind new posters. The problem comes when new posters don't understand how we do things around here. So, consider this a style guide for the newly-registered and first-posting LL person; hopefully these tips will help you become a contributor that brings something to the table, and will hopefully allow your entry into the admittedly high-standards world of Lookout Landing to be as easy as possible.
So, here's the basics - and they're phrased as absolutes intentionally:
1. If you've never posted here before, always lurk before posting. The "regulars" at this place have been here a long, long time, and most of them have forgotten more about baseball than you or I will ever know. I would recommend reading everything (EVERYTHING: main posts, FanPosts, FanShots, comments, everything) that's written here for 2-3 weeks before posting, and when you do post and/or comment, try to reflect the tone of the posts/comments you've read over the past few months.
Don't make your first post an insult. Let people get to know you before you let your inner snark monster out.
You will be OK as long as you, as the new person, don't assume you know more than the people that have been here a long time. Respect the knowledge that's here, ask questions of it, and don't assume it's wrong because some dude at your office/bar told you that Derek Jeter's the best shortstop ever. Which leads to...
2. If you think something that someone said is wrong, feel free to challenge it - but if you do, do so intelligently, with an argument backed up with more than "YOU SUCK OMG WHAT DO YOU KNOW'. That approach will get you hounded out of here fast, and not just by the mods.
3. Don't be afraid to be wrong; most of the non-analysts on here are proven wrong about some of the things they say. If you are proven wrong, accept it with grace - you don't have to agree with it, but don't start a flame war because someone comes up with a refutation of something you said.
3a. Corollary to #3 - There's nothing wrong with being wrong. Where some new posters have problems is when they don't accept that they're wrong (even when shown beyond doubt that they are, in fact, wrong) and then insist on keeping the argument going, for whatever reason. Please don't be this person. If you say things that can be proven wrong, and are then subsequently proven wrong, accept it and move on.
4. Always use the subject line when making a comment. Even if it's one word that leads into your post. There are a few reasons for this, among them being that it makes comments easy to hide if necessary (while at work, some people don't want some of the more...shall we say, expressive images on their monitors for all to see), that it allows for easier moderation of comments, and that it just looks better.
5. Always format your sentences properly. "Properly" means capitalized first words of sentences and using commas, correct spelling, and correct punctuation. It also means using paragraph breaks, so that your long discourse can be readable (this rule may seem overly pedantic, but it's pretty non-negotiable; if it does seem pedantic, you're probably in the wrong place). It's easy to do, and it makes the place a much better resource. And, last but not least, absolutely no text-speak. Among other things, that does include LOL, OMG, and especially +1.
6. If you post pictures, make sure they're small - large pics suck up resources and cause slow load times for those of us on antiquated work networks. At the end of an image link, add the text "width-200>", without the quotes.
7. Don't be lazy in your assumptions. That guy at the office that told you Jeter's the best shortstop ever? He's wrong, and anyone on here will point you towards concrete reasons why. If you make an assumption based on the guy in your office, and are then shown why that assumption is wrong, see #3.
8. Be open minded about what you don't know. Be willing to be educated.
9. When replying to a comment, please use the "Reply" button instead of starting a new comment thread. This makes conversations much easier to follow.
9a. You don't have to be the fastest to respond to someone's comment. Or the first. It's not a race - take a few seconds to think about what you're saying before you say it.
10. FanPosts have a minimum word count of 75 words. If you have something to say in a FanPost, make sure that it contains 75 words pertaining to the topic which you want to discuss - a FanPost should not be "We should trade Ichiro" followed by "75 words" repeated over and over again to hit the 75 word limit. or any other random text as filler after your five-word FanPost. Make your FanPosts count. You get one free as a warning, then you're gone.
11. Dissenting opinions are welcome, and should be encouraged, at Lookout Landing.
If you have a dissenting opinion, BE PREPARED TO PROVE YOUR POINT. All-caps yelling and repeated expression of distaste for the people with whom you are arguing do NOT constitute "proving your point". If you believe in something strongly enough to assert it at LL, be ready to demonstrate why you believe it, be ready to defend yourself logically, and keep #3 and #3a in mind at all times.
12. Please stay on topic in the baseball-related threads. There's generally a FanPost created every week or so called OFFTOP or Off-Topic Post Of The Day or some such thing - use those threads to discuss bands, movies, food, beer, anything that doesn't directly relate to baseball. The off-topic posts are pretty free-form, but there are guidelines as to expected behaviors in this here thread. Absolute third-rail no-no's: Politics and religion. There is pretty much a zero-tolerance policy for those two topics - even in the Off-Topic threads.